Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Few of My Favorite Things (to do)

I was invited to participate in this garden blog game by The Ark Cottage Garden

The rules of the game are:
1) Inform who invited you
2) List 10 things you like to do
3) Invite another 10 bloggers to do the same.

So here goes :-)

1)  I love to serve the Lord at my Bible Study Fellowship group and also serving in the Landscape Maintenance Ministry at my church, Countryside Bible Church, both in Southlake, Texas.  A quote from the book The Valley of Vision says, "There is no comfort in anything apart from enjoying Thee and being engaged in Thy service."  This is so true.   There is nothing more rewarding than serving the One who saved me and continues to cultivate the garden of my soul :-)

2)  I love all aspects of gardening:  To design a garden from scratch, to take a bare patch of ground and turn it into something beautiful.  I love diggin' in the dirt, weeding, planting, sharing my gardening knowledge with others.   I love to talk about gardening with other plant freaks like me!   I love the physical benefits of gardening, as well as the mental -- there's something therapeutic about getting some dirt under your nails.   As I always say, "A day without dirt under your nails is like a day without sunshine."

3)  I love to tour other gardens to get great ideas for my garden as well as for clients.  I have a small garden design/consultation business called Signature Gardens, so I'm always in need of inspiration.  Plus visiting other gardens is just plain relaxing!   My all-time favorite garden tour was at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, Canada.   Breathtaking!!

4)  I love to shop at nurseries for, what else, plants!   The best part about having my little garden business, is that I get to shop even more...and it doesn't cost me a penny :-)  Now, shopping for clothes is another story.   That is one of my least favorite things to do.   I'm sure most husbands would love for their wives to say this; but, let me tell you, I could put my husband in the poor house buying plants! 

5) I love garden blogging!   I am very new to this, just started in September, but already I am hooked.   I hurt my arm this past spring, so I am limited on how much physical work I can do in my garden right now, so my garden blog is my new creative outlet while my arm is recuperating.  Referring back to No. 2, my love of ALL aspects of gardening, especially the physical part, is what did my arm in.   You can read about my little ordeal in my Gimpy Gardener post.  Thankfully I can still use the computer!

6)  I love to compost.   There's just something about taking a bunch of garbage and turning it into "black gold."   Compost can work miracles in your garden.  There is nothing like it!!   All you need is a little bit of brown stuff, a little bit of green stuff, some water and some air, and you are good to go.  Much to my husband's chagrin, we topdress our lawn every spring with a half inch of compost.   My husband does not share my enthusiasm for gardening.  I get so excited for Compost Day, I can hardly stand it!  My husband says that when it comes to compost, my excitement level is that of a kid in a candy store, and his is like that of an old man having a root canal.  LOL! 

7)  I love to cook and try new recipes.   Back when I had a "real job," I used to be a free-lance court reporter.  I had very odd hours, and I never had the time or desire to cook.   We went out to eat a lot back then, or I made tunafish.   Apparently I must have made a lot of tuna back then, because I can't get my husband within 10 feet of the stuff now!  But when I quit court reporting, I suddenly had  more time on my hands, so I decided to learn to cook (this was before my gardening passion got a little out of control, mind you).  

8)  I love to do yoga.   I'll probably offend some true "yogis"  out there, but I don't do yoga for the "spiritual or mental" benefits.  I do it for the physical benefits.   It keeps me limber and strong to be able to keep up with the physical demands of gardening.  Well, that is until I hurt my arm overdoing it in the garden.   I also do weight-lifting to stay strong.   Apparently my little forearm muscles are not meant to take the abuse I dish out (who knew!)  So as with gardening right now, yoga is on hiatus for the time being, as well.   Bwaaahhh!!!

9)  I love eating chocolate, dark chocolate.    Even though this is something I do love to do, I must limit myself because otherwise I have no control.   Last February my weight-lifting instructor challenged us to do a few extra sit-ups and push-ups and also suggested we check out the Eat Clean Diet.   As "they" say, we are what we eat, right?  So I checked out the website and decided to give the diet a try.  I don't consider it a "diet" anymore.  It is a way of eating.   No sugar, no processed foods.   No sugar?!!  How can I have chocolate when I can't eat sugar?  Well, that is my one indulgence in the sugar category.   Once in a while I have some chocolate covered raisins as my treat.  My husband has to hide them, though, and only bring out a few when I request them because, as I said, I have no control and I'd eat the whole box in one sitting if I could.

10)  And last, but not least, I love to take a nap on Sunday afternoon.    I go ninety-to-nothin' all week.   People call me "The Energizer Bunny" and tell me I'm like "a machine!"    And if I've heard it once, I've heard it a hundred times..."You need to slow down!"    (Note to self:  If I had listened to that wise advice sooner, maybe I'd still be diggin' in the dirt today instead of nursing a gimpy arm!)   
But I digress.   I need my Sunday nap :-)   Zzzzzzzzz.....

So if you do not need a nap after reading this long entry, check out these other blogs below.   I have invited them to join in on this game.  (And, yes, there are more than 10 listed.  I couldn't pick just 10.)

Leaping Geenly, Windsor, Canada
Digging, Austin, TX
May Dreams Gardens, Indianapolis, IN
Garden Musings, Manhattan, KS
Southern Meadows, Talmo GA
Garden Sense, Hershey, PA
Perennial Garden Lover, Newport News, VA
The Whimsical Gardener, Austin, TX
Missy's Garden, Brisbane, Australia
Rhone Street Gardens, Portland, OR
Always Growing, Covington, LA
Faire Garden, Athens, TN

I hope you get some time today to do a few of your favorite things!

Until next time, happy gardening...

Toni :-)


  1. Gee, Toni, Thanks for the offer, but I just did the game a week or two back at the urging of O.N.E. My post on that was at http://kansasgardenmusings.blogspot.com/2010/09/garden-game.html

    ProfessorRoush (Garden Musings)

  2. Hi Toni - Thanks for the offer. I've posted for tomorrow but will accept your invitation and try to post by Friday. Reading your likes, I was amazed at how much we have in common. I'm part of the BSF class here in Austin, do yoga, love to cook and design as well...kind of funny huh?

  3. Aha, Blotanical is now abuzz with many ice-breaking posts like this but I really enjoyed it very much. I think this is a great way to know about our Blotanist friends. Cheers!

  4. Great to read your post Toni - I hope your poor arm is on the mend - silly toni digging to deep ;)

    Looking forward to reading more!

  5. We have a lot in common too, but it's my husband who loves the compost. I like using it but he just loves making it and turning it and checking it. We call him the Compost King.

  6. @Missy, I used to have a car that my husband called "The Compost Heap." I was always amazed at how many plants I could fit in that car! I have upgraded to a truck now. Much more practical :-)

    @arkgarden: Slow progress on the "As The Arm Turns" drama. I did manage to plant some red sorrel one-handed today. Got some dirt under my nails...at least on one hand.

  7. Thanks for inviting me to join the garden blog game. I had fun writing about some favorite pastimes. We have some things in common and I'm glad I was introduced to your blog.